Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Bird's Nest - Beijing, China

Located in the Olympic Green, the US$423 million stadium is the world's largest steel structure.[5] The design was awarded to a submission from the Swiss architecture firm Herzog & de Meuron in April 2003, after a bidding process that included 13 final submissions. The design, which originated from the study of Chinese ceramics, implemented steel beams in order to hide supports for the retractable roof; giving the stadium the appearance of a "Bird's nest". Ironically, the retractable roof was later removed from the design after inspiring the stadium's most recognizable aspect.[6] Ground was broken in December 2003 and the stadium officially opened in June 2008. A shopping mall and a hotel are planned to be constructed to increase use of the stadium, which will host football events after the Olympics.